Day #110 - An Island Trek & a Paradise Surprise

Today was a min-transit day. We were relocating ourselves from the crowded centre of Kuta in the south west of Bali to the north coast near Gretek - about a three hour taxi ride away. 
We enjoyed our time at the Hard Rock Hotel, but I think it is fair to say that a combination of Kuta's insane level of overcrowding and busyness, along with the family-friendly style of the hotel, meant that we were ready to move on to something more quiet, more us. 
Our taxi driver naturally used Google Maps to navigate our way across the island, which meant we didn't always stick to the main roads. You know what it's like what sat-nav is in charge, it finds the shortest route no matter what the road/track/path! Therefore we can say we saw a good variety of Bali country life as we headed north across the country.
At one point we climbed up into the mountainous region which gave us some spectacular views across the rainforest covered valleys. Sadly, I can't share a photograph of these with you, since, being a rainforest, it was raining and the view from the car windows was obscured by the rain. At another point, we came across part of the road that had been clearly washed away in a rainstorm, leaving us (or rather our driver) to carefully navigate over what was left of the road. Further downhill (we were now on the other side of the mountain) there was evidence that that same rainstorm had washed away people's gardens, had entered their houses and covered the land with debris. 
When we finally arrived at our destination, we were in for a shock. For several reasons, which I won't go into here, this was a last minute booking that we had only secured a few days prior. Therefore, we weren't entirely sure what we had booked. Sure, the photos on the website looked amazing, but as we got nearer to our final stop, the local area didn't quite match the tranquility and luxury of the aforementioned photos. 
Indeed, when we turned off the main road (and I use the term "main" generously) we drove down a dirt track and past a few ramshackled buildings (Bottom right photo above is the entrance to the dirt track). James and I looked at each other and exchanged confused and puzzled looks.
The track gave way to a paved driveway that lead to a modern outbuilding and there waiting for us was a receptionist. We were in the right place! 
The Balinese people are so warm and friendly and we were soon being escorted to our rooms with all the pleasantries I expect celebrities and royalty are used to. We were lead to a narrow double doorway in a bamboo fence. When the doors were pushed opened and we got a glimpse inside, both James and I squealed (internally) with delight. We had arrived at a luxury private villa, just for us. Take a look yourself:

We were so excited to have this amazing place all to ourselves! It made us feel very much like royalty. Although there are several other villas on site (all different and unique) we felt that we were in our own slice of paradise, millions of miles away from anywhere. We particularly loved the pool (who wouldn't) but also the long winding path down to the beach, punctuated at the end with the sun loungers from which to enjoy the sunrise - who am I kidding?! the sunset. 
With no central restaurant, food is brought to your villa on request. So after our initial exploration of our new accommodation, we set about exploring the menu and sending in our choices for lunch. 
We ordered spring rolls (homemade and delicious), chicken burrito and chicken fajitas (we may be in Bali, but when Mexican is on the menu...) and creamy potato soup (made with instant potato mix - strange, but James loved it!).